HC Deb 15 July 1999 vol 335 c330W
Yvette Cooper

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will make a statement on the impact on women compared to men of(a) the 1999 Budget measures and (b) the combined effect of the 1997, 1998 and 1999 Budget measures. [90818]

Ms Hewitt

Women make up a disproportionate number of the poorest groups in society. They are also more likely to be the primary care-giver to young children in families across the UK. The Government is committed to ensuring that women get a fair deal out of the tax and benefits system. To this end, the measures announced in the latest and previous Budgets boost the incomes of low-paid women and women who work part-time, as well as giving increased financial support to people caring for children.

Information on the average increase in weekly income, by gender, is given in the following table.

£ per week
Women Men All individuals
Budget 1999 2.90 2.00 2.50
Budgets 1997, 1998 and 1999 combined 5.30 2.30 3.90

All the figures are relative to indexation and are in 1999–2000 prices. They reflect the impact on disposable income of the major direct tax, National Insurance, and benefit measures included in the 1999, 1998 and July 1997 Budgets and taking effect over the four years from 1998–99, plus the impact of the National Minimum Wage. They are based on data from the ONS Family Expenditure Survey.